As ASUG and SAP leaders continue planning for the Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Virtual Summit—North America program, two keynote panelists took a moment to discuss what they hear from customers and what they plan to share with Summit attendees.

Here is an edited version of the recent conversation ASUG had with Chief Product Owner of SAP Cloud Application Lifecycle Management, Michael Kloeffer, and SAP Chief Service Architect Janko Budzisch.

Q. In your roles, what are you hearing from customers about current business and technology challenges related to ALM?

Kloeffer: Customers are moving to the cloud with more standardized solution offerings from SAP and they want to simplify their processes. Also, in the cloud they need ALM; that changes their focus from development to extension and integration.

Budzisch: For customers it can be unclear which operational activities need to be done by SAP, by partners, or by the customers themselves, whether they are using a cloud-centric or a hybrid solution.

Q. How has SAP recently worked to answer challenges specific to ALM?

Kloeffer: Cloud ALM (CALM) is a new offering specifically targeted to customers moving to the cloud. It is a cloud-native offering itself. It is easy to consume and is available as part of Enterprise Support cloud editions—with no extra license or fee, so that customers now have all the applications they need in one place to manage their transitions in CALM.

Budzisch: The clearly defined scope in SAP Cloud ALM, for cloud-centric customers—and in SAP Focused Run, for hybrid- or on premises–centric customers—reflects the role model for operations related to the different solution types.

Q. How will SAP help its customers meet those challenges with new strategies and technologies in 2022 and beyond?

Kloeffer: CALM follows a daily deployment and bi-weekly feature delivery process. It will be enhanced constantly with new functionalities and content. We have just provided support from implementing SAP SuccessFactors and will be adding support to integrate SAP Ariba shortly. In addition, we enhanced change control and release management so customers can leverage this for all supported cloud solution[s].

Budzisch: Our strategic positioning is clear. Now it’s about execution—meaning providing the right content for SAP as well as for non-SAP products.

Q. Why is the ALM Virtual Summit a “must attend” for ASUG members and customers?

Kloeffer: For new customers, it is a very good way to gain a knowledge overview and become familiar with all our offerings—SAP Cloud ALM as well as Solution Manager and Focused Run. For experienced customers and partners, it is the perfect way to get in touch with experts and to attend deeper knowledge sessions.

Q. What will be among the key messages you will highlight during the Summit keynote panel?

Kloeffer: I plan to convey how we’ve evolved Cloud ALM in 2021 to become a full-fledged ALM solution that now supports and integrates with all major SAP cloud solutions.

Budzisch: We want to emphasize the clear positioning of our two operation platforms: SAP Cloud ALM for cloud-centric customers, and SAP Focused Run for hybrid- or on premises–centric customers. It is key that customers understand this.

More information about the Summit and registration can be found here.

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